Fort Worth might appear to live in the shadow of its bigger brother Dallas, but the city can hold its own. Not only is Fort Worth the fastest-growing city in Texas but it also has more than doubled its population in the last 20 years, and for good reasons too. Cowtown is a city with many aces up its sleeve – from a thriving business environment to a diversified job market and a reasonable cost of living. But part of Fort Worth’s appeal is also that it’s rich in terms of local attractions. If you’re not sure what the area offers from this perspective, we’ve got you covered. Here are some types of local attractions that are sure to make your new Fort Worth life memorable:
1. Outdoor attractions
As it happens, Fort Worth is an outdoor-friendly city. The amazing skyline, rivers and local geography, in general, can afford you ample opportunities to go out and about. Here are some of the most sought-after outdoor activities you can partake in when living in Fort Worth:
If hiking is your favorite pastime, Fort Worth is not short on trails and parks that you can tread. Head out to Eagle Mountain Park to escape the city. Four hundred acres of breathtaking views over Eagle Mountain Lake will greet you just 15 miles outside of the city. Access the park for free from dawn to dusk, and there are about six miles of trails that you can explore when hiking here. To help preserve the natural habitat for the wildlife, pets and bikes are not allowed.
If you wish to experience hiking away from the city, all you need to do is head over to the Trinity Trail System. You’ll have over 100 miles of trail at your disposal – either paved surfaces or packed dirt. The trails are open for walking, biking and even horseback riding. Panther Island is one of the favorite downtown destinations off the Fort Worth trails. On this particular trail, you’ll be able to go for miles in either direction you wish to go.
Don’t miss out on visiting the Airfield Falls Trail to take in the rugged beauty of nature. As its names suggest, the 1.9-mile trail leads you to a waterfall once you hike through native woodlands. If you’re out there when the water is running, it’s a good idea to have a birding book on you to observe the multitude of migrating butterflies.
Once you wish to take a break from hiking and put your gear away, you can always turn to self storage – instead of keeping your hiking gear around your house where it can add to the clutter. To keep your home tidy, rent a self storage unit in Fort Worth for your hiking gear and any other sports gear you might have. A 5×5 unit would probably suffice if you’re only renting for these kinds of items. If your storage needs extend to include other household items, you’re better off consulting this self storage unit size guide to help you determine which unit size is best suited for you.
Since 2013, Fort Worth has offered its residents a city-wide bike-share system to encourage people to embrace a more pedal-friendly lifestyle. Through Fort Worth B-Cycle, you can rent one of the 400 public-use bicycles available through Downtown, Near Southside, Cultural District, Stockyards and more. Take advantage of the Fri-yay program that allows you to ride a public bike for free on the first Friday of every month.
Take your bike – either personal or public – to Trinity Park if you’re ready to stay in shape while exploring the city. Enjoy the 40 miles of trails inside the park and make a pit stop to play frisbee or relax in a tree hammock. Trinity Park is child-friendly, with playgrounds and a mini “steam” train available for the little ones.
If mountains and bikes are more your speed, get ready to partake in some of the best mountain biking that you can find in Texas. Only 20 minutes away from downtown, you can find five different single-track bike trails. Because of the rugged terrain, you might need to be extra careful when riding here. Bring lots of water and a tire repair kit, as pinch flats can occur due to the rocky surfaces. When you’re not out and about biking, keep your bike in a 5×5 storage unit so that you have room for the things that count inside your home.
- Canoeing and kayaking
The Brazos River, made famous through the writings of John Graves, lies about an hour and a half away from Fort Worth. Take advantage of the proximity of the river to the city, whether it’s a day trip or you choose to camp out there for a few days. Always check the current river level to make sure it’s safe to paddle. Sunblock and appropriate clothing are must-haves to keep you safe on all levels while you explore the river.
Go to Backwoods if you’re into kayaking. You can find the rental facility at Panther Island, where you have several miles of water at your disposal for kayaking or stand-up paddleboarding. When you follow the Trinity River Paddling Trail, you have access to over 20 spots for kayaks from Fort Worth all the way to Dallas. The trail begins at Eagle Mountain Lake’s Fort Worth Nature Center and takes you through 20 miles of fun before reaching downtown Fort Worth. Always check river conditions and wear a life jacket to stay safe.
2. Top local restaurants
If you’re looking for your next scrumptious bite to eat, Fort Worth delivers without fail. You can find a satisfying assortment of upscale dining that caters to Southwestern cuisine. As there are many places that combine amazing food with excellent ambiance, it’s difficult to pin down the absolute best in local restaurants. However, we took the liberty of suggesting some of the best places you can eat in Fort Worth as follows:
- Ellerbe Fine Foods
Located where there used to be a gas station, Ellerbe Fine Foods is a restaurant that prides itself on bringing farm-fresh ingredients to the table. Enjoy the relaxed, stylish atmosphere of the place either inside one of the dining rooms or on the outdoor patio. American, Southern and Californian recipes found their way on this restaurant’s menu, as the chef strives to create an ever-evolving menu based on locally grown produce. Some popular menu offerings include Mixed Melon Gazpacho and B&G Garden Edamame Ravioli and Crispy Texas Quail.
- Bonnell’s Fine Texas Cuisine
Bonnell’s Fine Texas Cuisine is a restaurant that lives up to its name. Their farm-to-table philosophy in cuisine earned them several awards of “Top Restaurant,” “Best Southwest Restaurant” and “Best Chef” by Fort Worth Magazine and more. You’re sure to find scrumptious dishes that best reflect the regional style as the southwestern, Creole and Mexican influences found their way on the menu. Try their Beef Tenderloin, Oyster Texasfeller or Elk Mini Tacos if you’re curious to find out what their “greatest hits” are.
- Eddie V’s
For a stylish fine-dining experience, Eddie V’s is the place to be in Fort Worth. You’ll get a taste of artistic dishes – some of the most exquisite seafood and steak dishes in town, as they come into season. The restaurant boasts an award-winning wine list featured by Wine Spectator, with more than 300 wine varieties grown in California and all over the world. Residents know Eddie V’s not only for its outstanding dishes and liquor but also for impeccable service. It’s a wonderful location for celebrating special occasions as the ambiance is very pleasant.
3. Sports-related entertainment
Whether you like to stay active or simply love cheering on your favorite team, Fort Worth has a wealth of opportunities to either go to sporting events or to partake in some active fun yourself. Here are some types of active attractions that might interest you:
- Sporting events
Fort Worth may dedicate much of its sports attention to the professional sports teams hailing from Dallas, but the city has its own teams as well. Take, for instance, the TCU Horned Frogs – a team competing in NCCA Division I athletics. There’s also a local baseball team that has been an active participant in the latest NCAA tournaments and a few College World Series.
In good western fashion, Fort Worth is home to weekly rodeos held at Cowtown Coliseum in the Stockyards. Additionally, it plays host to the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo, which takes place at the Will Rogers Memorial Center at the Dickies Arena. TCU basketball games are also hosted here as well as future basketball tournaments.
- Cowtown marathon
For those who like to partake in the joy and fun of a marathon, Fort Worth has you covered. You can participate in the annual Cowtown Marathon, traditionally held every year in February since 1978. It’s a two-day event that includes an adult 5K, a kids 5k, 10K, a half marathon, a marathon and an ultramarathon. It is one of the largest multiple-distance events held in Texas.
Let us know which Fort Worth attraction is more to your taste in the comments section below. Welcome to Cowtown!